The attached letter, copied to the OCITF and dated April 9, 2010 to UCI’s Chief Campus Counsel Diane Fields Giocaris was received today. To read the letter click here
On October 2, 2009 , the Orange County Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism (OCITF) received a carbon copy of a response to concerns raised by the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) from Diane Fields Geocaris, UCI’s Chief Campus Counsel. (To read the letter, click here.) According to the ZOA, “the Muslim Student Union (MSU) a registered student group on campus, may have illegally used the University of California, Irvine (UCI) as a base for fund-raising for the terrorist group Hamas.” Continue reading
ZOA: Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations letter urges U.S. Department of Justice to investigate fundraising by Viva Palestina at UC Irvine
Courtesy of the ZOA:
ZOA Praises Presidents’ Conference For Urging Justice Dept. to Investigate Alleged Fundraising for Terrorist Group Hamas at UC Irvine’s Muslim Student Event
The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) praises the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations for urging the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate the solicitation of funds for a group called Viva Palestina at a Muslim Student Union event at the University of California, Irvine on May 21, 2009, and whether those funds were provided to the terrorist group Hamas. In a letter to U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder, Jr., Alan P. Solow and Malcolm Hoenlein – the Chairman and Executive Vice Chairman, respectively, of the Presidents’ Conference – said, “We strongly support an investigation by the Department of Justice into whether funds solicited were provided to Hamas, which has been designated by the Department of State as a Foreign Terrorist Organization. Federal law prohibits furnishing material support or resources to U.S.-designated terrorist groups like Hamas.”
On May 21, 2009, a registered student group at UC Irvine called the Muslim Student Union featured extremist British politician and Israel-basher George Galloway, who spoke about his group called Viva Palestina and the convoys of supply-filled vehicles that the group was bringing into Gaza. This program was part of the annual Israel-bashing event that the Muslim Student Union sponsors on campus, this one entitled “Israel: The Politics of Genocide.”
There is evidence that at the event, funds were solicited from the audience for Viva Palestina. There is additional evidence – including a 31-page report about Viva Palestina prepared by terrorism experts at Steve Emerson’s Investigative Project on Terrorism – that Viva Palestina’s goal is not charitable but to provide support to Hamas. In fact, during the March 2009 Viva Palestina convoy to Gaza, Galloway stated, “This is not charity. This is politics.” Continue reading
This week the Orange County Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism (OCITF) received a carbon copy of a letter from the Zionist Organization America (ZOA) to UCI Chief Campus Counsel Diane Giocaris. The letter suggests that UCI is “dragging its feet”, with respect to an investigation of alleged fund raising for Hamas by British MP George Galloway and his Viva Palestina organization at a May 21, 2009 , Muslim Student Union (MSU) sponsored event. Hamas has been designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) by the U.S. State Department. To read ZOA’s letter click here
In a letter dated September 30, 2009 to ZOA and copied to the OCITF, MS Giocaris stated “…With regard to your allegations regarding the conduct of University employees and that MSU violated University policies, we have initiated an internal review of these matters, and will proceed as expediciously as possible…” To read Ms. Geocaris letter click here
Congresswoman Sue Myrick’s (R. North Carolina) letter to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner concerning Viva Palestina
JTA , THE JERUSALEM POST
A US congressman is the latest to call for a Justice Department investigation into whether a pro-Palestinian group has been raising money on college campuses for Hamas.
In a letter to US Attorney General Eric Holder, Rep. Brad Sherman (D-Calif.) urged a probe into Viva Palestina USA, a humanitarian aid convoy led by British lawmaker George Galloway that brought medical supplies to Gaza last July.
Both the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) and Anti-Defamation League in recent months have urged Holder to investigate reports about the convoy’s links to Hamas.
The groups made their requests after Galloway and other Viva Palestina USA members appeared and reportedly raised funds at some college campuses in the spring and summer.
“Clearly, people and organizations in the United States cannot be allowed to solicit funds for foreign terrorist organizations,” Sherman wrote in his letter to Holder.
“That such solicitation is occurring during the middle of the day at a public university is truly frightening,” he said, referring to the University of California, Irvine.
Sherman wrote similar letters expressing concern about the reports on Viva Palestina USA to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, University of California, Irvine chancellor Michael Drake and Internal Revenue Service commissioner Douglas Shulman.
Viva Palestina USA was launched after the Viva Palestina group that Galloway set up in Britain sent a convoy to Gaza in March. It did not respond to requests for comment. Continue reading
ZOA letter to UC Irvine: MSU/Galloway May ’09 campus event may have illegally raised funds for Hamas
On September 22, 2009, the Orange County Independent Task Force on anti-Semitism (OCITF) received a carbon copy of a letter from the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) to UC Irvine General Counsel Diane Giocaris. The letter describes “…very disturbing information concerning the Muslim Student Union (MSU) and a program it conducted during its anti-Israel and anti-Semitic event at UCI last May.”
On May 21, 2009, as part of “Israel: the Politics of Genocide,” the MSU featured George Galloway, a member of the British Parliament, whose topic was “Viva Palestina, Galloway’s convoy to Gaza…”. ZOA’s letter alleges that: ”Prior to the program, MSU specifically affirmed in writing that this was not going to be a fundraiser. Yet, according to the ZOA, at the program, both MSU and Mr Galloway solicited funds for Viva Palestina from the over 850 people in attendance and we are concerned that the funds may have been delivered to Hamas in Gaza in July 2009.” Hamas has been designated by the US State Department as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) and providing material support and resources to an FTO is a violation of federal law. The letter states that several University policies were violated during this event and that at least four campus administrators were present, but did nothing to stop the unauthorized and “potentially illegal” fund raising activities.
Earlier this year, Galloway was refused entry into Canada for allegedly providing material support to Hamas.
The OCITF urges community members to contact UCI Chancellor Michael Drake and urge him to immediately investigate these very serious allegations.
Chancellor Michael Drake
University of California, Irvine
Office of the Chancellor
Irvine, CA 92697-5125